Occupancy is the engine that drives month-after-month of cash flow for real estate investors. But occupancy can be elusive at times, often because of market conditions. When occupancy is struggling at your properties, choosing the right incentives can help you find or retain quality tenants.
At HUNATHOME, we serve as the leading provider of property management in Dallas and Fort Worth. In our experience, incentives can be used to fill (or keep filled) properties in your portfolio without sacrificing to much in the way of cash flow. Here’s a look at some effective incentives you can offer to inspire new tenants to move in or existing tenants to stay.
Move-In Offers for New Tenants
Looking to fill a vacant property? Here’s a look at 5 incentives you can offer new tenants in an effort to get them to sign a lease and move in:
Flexible Terms: Many owners, investors and landlords have a standard lease agreement that they like to use. As an incentive, consider offering prospective tenants more flexible terms. Perhaps they want to bring a small pet into the property, or perhaps they want the flexibility to break a lease with 30, 60 or 90 days of notice. Adding flexibility of this nature can help fill a property when you need to.
Upgrades: If prospective tenants have seen the property and not taken action, consider a Make Ready. New paint, new carpet or flooring, new appliances and other upgrades might be just what they need to make a decision and sign a lease.
Free Month: A free first month is a classic move-in incentive. If you can’t absorb a free month up front, consider amortizing it across the life of the lease. For example, if monthly rent is $1,000 over 12 months, offering a rent of $916.67 would add up to one “free month” over the course of 12 months.
Online Payments: Convenience matters to tenants, too. If you can set up an online payment system, that level of convenience could be an incentive to the right prospects.
Partial Deposit: Deposits are tough for many tenants. It’s hard to come up with one month of rent as a deposit in addition to that initial rent payment. Consider slashing the deposit in half to incentivize prospective tenants to sign a lease agreement.
Stay Offers for Existing Tenants
Quality tenants are incredibly valuable. How do you get them to stay? Here’s a look at 5 things you can offer good tenants to incentivize them to stay for another lease term:
- Included Utilities: To get a tenant to sign a new lease, consider offering to pay a utility for the year. By offering to make the gas, electric or water bill inclusive, you may be able to raise the rent amount while also making your tenant feel like he or she got something in return.
- Rent Discount: The most obvious incentive would be a small rent discount. Of course, you would ideally raise the rent amount year over year to increase your cash flow. But, in a market where it’s hard to secure new tenants, a rent discount may be an attractive alternative to weeks or months of vacancy.
- Carpet Cleaning: Offer a thorough carpet cleaning or even a one-time maid service for tenants willing to sign a new lease agreement. Sometimes the thought of starting a new lease with an exceptionally clean property is enough to get tenants to stay.
- Grocery Delivery (or Other Services): Look for small services that can improve the lives of your tenants. Grocery delivery is a good option, or try establishing partnerships with gyms to provide discounts to your tenants. Depending on what matters most to your tenants, a relevant service may be compelling.
- Upgrades: Like with new tenants, offering upgrades can get existing tenants to sign on the dotted line. Upgrading with new appliances or new paint can make a property feel like it’s new again.
Management Support From HUNTAHOME
As an owner, investor or landlord, you have much to think about on a day-to-day basis. At HUNTAHOME, we offer DFW property management services so that you focus on strategy and the big picture of real estate investment while we take care of day-to-day operations. We can provide comprehensive property management in Fort Worth and Dallas, or we can provide a la carte services to complement what you and your in-house team are doing.
Contact us to learn more about our services as the leading provider of DFW property management.